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Sierra Club Fraud and Hypocrisy

By Paul Chesser, Heartland Institute Correspondent

A friend of a friend who leads a business association in Washington state passed along a note about a recent trip he made to D.C., where after several meetings on the Hill he concluded that “while Congress, particularly the U.S. Senate, may want to slow down and catch its breath with the President’s agenda (on global warming), environmental groups are just getting charged up.” He noted the upcoming EPA public comment hearings on regulating CO2 in Arlington, VA and Seattle, and cited specifically the Sierra Club’s call to action for those hearings. From the appeal posted at Sierra Club’s Web site:

The next step is showing there is a real call for change at upcoming EPA public hearings in Arlington, VA on May 18 and Seattle, WA on May 21.

Big Oil and Coal have spent tens of millions of dollars on lobbying efforts in Washington D.C., and we know they will push hard against any regulation from the EPA. We need to turn these hearings into a powerful demonstration that our country’s future will not be set by the coal industry and their allies. Please sign up today!

That the Sierra Club criticizes so-called “Big Oil and Coal’s” spending of millions of dollars, as though it was a David vs. Goliath scenario, is the height of deception. Between the three fiscal tax years of 2005 through 2007 (the years tax returns were available on Guidestar), the Club (a 501(c)(4) nonprofit) and its Foundation (a 501(c)(3) nonprofit) combined spent a total of more than $170 million to promote, educate, litigate and lobby on behalf of its agenda, an enormous percentage of which pushes the alarmism button on global warming and opposes more affordable fossil fuel development and power generation. And Sierra Club’s contribution to the effort is only a fraction of the overall financial muscle behind the alarmists’ effort — don’t forget groups like Environmental Defense, Earthjustice, Natural Resources Defense Council, and others, plus the multi-billion dollar foundations who help fund them.

The Washington state business leader adds this in his report:

They have a pretty active strategy and it is working right now. They have jammed the Seattle hearing on May 21 and there is little time for anyone else to testify. Their ultimate goal is to put Congress in a corner so they either embrace and pass President Obama’s agenda or put EPA in a position to enforce it.

Whether or not submitting a comment or testifying to Obama’s EPA about regulating CO2 is worthwhile or not is up to the individual, but it is undoubtedly worthwhile to submit your comments to the dozens of Democrat fence-sitters in Congress who are suffering heartburn (PDF) over the thought of having to vote for cap-and-trade this year.

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